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You Give, You Can! Everyone Can, says Amma

  Who is Mata Amritanandamayi? She is a world famous Indian saint most people identify as the "Hugging Amma." She is always on tour of places around the world, going to the masses, meeting them, hugging them one after other, no matter it is going on overnight, till the last devotee standing is attended to personally like a dedicated doctor in a mad, mad Indian Govt hospital listening to each patient's problems. And you return with...

Worship of the primordial god of the Universe, the Sun

  Aditya, Savita, Suryah, Gabhastiman, one with thousand eyes, the thousand-footed and the thousand-handed are all some of the names used in Vedas to denote the Sun god. He is also recognised as the primordial visible god of the Universe - Pratyaksha Paramesvara, all the other gods can be seen only through knowledge. He is extolled as the soul of the world (surya atma jagatah) and is the eye of the universe ('Cakshuh')...Surya is worshipped in all temples.. He is also shown standing on a chariot drawn by seven horses representing the seven days of the week in most cases and in some cases with seven swaras Sa, Ri, Ga, Ma, Pa, Da, Ni in music...

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April 2, 2015
New Andhra Capital Amaravati and the other Amravati
An ancient location called Amaravati that carries "vaasthu balam and nama balam" and situated near Krishna river in Guntur district is the much-awaited choice of Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu for the new Capital of Andhra Pradesh, which has lost Hyderabad to the newly-created Telangana State after bifurcation.
     HYDERABAD: A historically and religiously known ancient place called Amaravati (Amaravathi) in the coastal Guntur district, north of Guntur city and situated on the south-western bank of river Krishna, is the new Capital of Andhra Pradesh. It was once the Capital of the Satavahana dynasty, the first Andhra kings, in the second century BC.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu announced on April 1 that the new Capital of the State will be this Amaravati (Amaravathi) in Guntur district. He said it was a unanimous decision of the Cabinet. He had shot down a suggestion that the new Capital be named after NTR.

Andhra Pradesh, one of the 28 States of India, situated on the country's southeastern coast, was recently split to carve out a new Telangana State for which there had been violent agitations off and on for several decades. The Capital of the undivided State, Hyderabad, falling within Telangana region, has gone to the new State, although it will be the shared Capital of both the States till 2024, time given for Andhra to build its own Capital.

Now in the hands of the brand-maker Chief Minister, the project to raise Amaravati (Amaravathi) will take off as quickly as early next month with architectural support from experts of Singapore who have already handed over a draft master plan. The foundation stone will be laid by June first week. Thirty thousand acres of farm land north of Guntur city up to the south-western bank of Krishna river is being acquired, although some land owners have gone to the court.

Brimming with a spirit of unblemished dedication like our Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Naidu, who has no regrets that the Hyderabad he nursed into an internationally known IT hub has gone away, is seized of the new challenge of giving shape to "the world's best city" at Amaravati (Amaravathi).

Famous for Buddhist sites erected during Ashoka's time, and for a variety of ancient Shiv lingas that attract huge numbers of pilgrims year round, the new Capital has the certificate of 'vaastu' and has an auspicious name, going by Naidu's claims.

Here are more details coming. The essential buildings for Raj Bhawan, State legislature, Secretariat and a High Court will come up with Japanese speed in the designated location.

Expressways and ring roads will connect the major towns and ports like Vizag, Guntur city, Vijayawada, Hyderabad and Bangalore. There will also be built an international and domestic airport. A railway freight corridor connecting New Delhi via Hyderabad and a national waterway have also been proposed in the draft plan. The new Capital is estimated to cost Rs 20,000 cr in the first phase, of which the initial Central contribution will be Rs 1,500 cr.

GUNTUR: Krishna river that separates Guntur and Krishna districs forms the north-eastern and eastern boundary of Guntur district. South-east of Guntur is the Bay of Bengal, in the south is Prakasam district, on the west Mahbubnagar district, and on the northwest Nalgonda district. Guntur has 57 mandals. Paddy, tobacco, cotton and chillies are the main crops. The places of historical importance in Guntur district are Amaravati, Ponnur, Bhattiprolu, Vinukonda, Kotappakonda, Undavalli caves, Gurazala, Macherla, Kondavid fort and Sitanagaram. Guntur city is the administrative headquarters. Mostly plains, the district is a textile hub. Climatically, hurricanes are very common as is the case in the whole of Andhra-Odisha coasts, usually happening in the rainy season of monsoon starting early June. Telugu and Urdu are the main languges spoken.

AMARAVATI: Amaravati (Amaravathi) is about 40 km north-west of Guntur city, connected by motorable road, and 60 km to the north-west of Vijayawada, the three forming an irregular, directional triangle. Vijayawada is the nearest airport. And the nearest railway stations are Guntur city and Vijayawada, which are very busy railheads well-connected to all major cities in the country. Amaravati (Amaravathi) has fairly good bus service also to other towns.

The Chief Minister claims the new Capital has both "vaasthu balam and nama balam." For him the name carries 'strength'. Amaravati (Amaravathi) is described as 'Punyakshetra' where Subramanya killed the demon Tarakasura, splintering a Shiv linga into several pieces. The Amareswara temple, Buddhist stupa - Amaravati Mahachaitya - and other sites of religious and historical significance have turned Amaravati (Amaravathi) into a centre of pilgrimage and tourism. The Amareswara temple has a 15-ft high marble Shiva lingam, apart from five others such as Pranaveswara, Agasteswara, Kosaleswara, Someswara, Parthiveswara. It's but natural pilgrims throng Amaravati (Amaravathi) during Maha Shivaratri.

THE OTHER AMRAVATI: However, there is another Amaravati, this one spelt as Amravati. It is the name of a whole district of Maharashtra, west of Nagpur and also of its headquarters. This too has religious and historical significance. Confused!

Naidu couldn't be ignorant of this large and known place next door. But he is too obsessed with his selection's "vaasthu balam and nama balam." It will definitely be misleading for the rest of Indians in perpetuity. The enthusiastic Chief Minister has still time. How about calling it Amareswaram?

- RM Nair

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